LinkedIn is more than just a place to go when you’re looking for work. It’s the social platform par excellence for organizations looking to build partnerships, find their next hire, and even keep an eye on their competition. But if you want your company to make more of a splash, you need to up your LinkedIn SEO game.
Like most social networks, LinkedIn has a search engine and an algorithm, meaning you’ll be competing for attention with other businesses using the platform. Thankfully, it only takes a bit of work to make your company’s page shine above the rest.
Keep reading for simple tips that will supercharge your LinkedIn page’s SEO profile.
Bonus: Download a free social SEO checklist and follow pro tips for Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn to get your posts seen by more people.
What is LinkedIn SEO?
LinkedIn SEO (search engine optimization) is the process of optimizing your LinkedIn page and posts to make them easily findable through LinkedIn search.
Similar to techniques used to make websites rank highly in search engines like Google, LinkedIn SEO involves researching and including keywords that communicate what your LinkedIn page is really about (like terms specific to your industry or your product) throughout your page. That makes it easier for potential customers and applicants to find the page or service they’re looking for.
Why is LinkedIn SEO so important?
SEO is all about making content easier to find through search engines.
By choosing the right keywords and optimizing your content to reflect them (e.g. by including them in titles) you can make it more likely that people searching for those keywords land on your page. For LinkedIn SEO, it’s about using keywords that clearly communicate what a profile, a company page, or your posts are about.
If your organization specializes in social media marketing, for example, you’ll want to use keywords that match your industry, like “social media consultant,” “social media marketing services,” and “social media management.” (Good news! Our free LinkedIn post generator makes it easy.)
Because there are so many companies on LinkedIn competing for attention from the same customer base, LinkedIn SEO can make a huge difference. Either your competitors will show up first in search results or you will.
LinkedIn SEO ranking factors
While LinkedIn has never shared SEO guidelines or hinted at official ranking factors, it’s safe to assume that the platform uses similar factors to search engines like Google, which are well-known.
With that in mind, here are some ranking factors to consider when optimizing your pages for LinkedIn.
- The right keywords. It’s pretty simple. If you want your company’s LinkedIn page to rank high in search results for specific keywords, you need to have those keywords in your profile. You also need to make sure they actually match what you have to offer. Don’t go for high-value keywords that don’t match your page, as these could actually harm your page’s performance. (Also, avoid keyword stuffing, i.e. overusing relevant keywords to “game” the algorithm.)
- Page completion. What do you think your target audience is most likely to click on? A profile with no picture, nothing in the “About” section, and a single line about their product that was out of date years ago? Or a profile that’s full of accurate information?
- Frequent updates: One key ranking factor for most search engines is freshness, meaning that content that’s been most recently updated with the latest info is more likely to rank highly in search results. It’s a good idea to frequently update your page with recent events, company news, and so on.
- Spam: Search engines hate spam, whether it’s a piece of content that’s stuffed with keywords but doesn’t deliver any value or something that’s trying to lure visitors to shady links. If your page looks like spam, it’s usually not going to rank well in search results.
Now that you have a bit of an idea as to why some LinkedIn profiles and pages rank above others, let’s go into how you can make it happen for yourself.
5 LinkedIn SEO optimization tactics for better reach
LinkedIn SEO goes beyond just making sure you’re using the right keywords. Here are a few things you can do to improve SEO for your organization’s LinkedIn page.
1. Use your headline as your elevator pitch
Your headline is one of the first things people will notice, so there’s a temptation to just make it really catchy.
And while that’s a great way to get someone to click through to your profile, it’s not the best way to actually get your page in front of them. Instead, use keywords that are relevant to your company — or your industry — in your headline. Keep it short and to the point. You don’t need five keywords in there; one or two will do.
2. Customize your URL
Did you know that you don’t have to keep your page’s original URL? LinkedIn will set a default URL for your page that’ll just be a bunch of numbers, sort of like this:
If you want to improve your LinkedIn page’s SEO, you can edit your URL to reflect a keyword that ties into your industry. If you specialized in social media marketing, for example, you can customize your link like this:
If your company is already well known in your niche, only including your name in the URL is also a good idea:
3. Optimize your About section
You can use up to 2,600 characters in your page’s About section, which amounts to about 371 to 650 words, depending on what words you use. That’s a lot of prime SEO space, so you should use it to the fullest! If you’re not sure where to start, you can use a tool like Google Trends to find trending keywords relevant to your industry and weave them into your About section.
Make sure you do this naturally! Use your About section to describe how your company sets itself apart from the competition, what makes your product a great option for potential customers, and how you got to where you are. Then, just put in a bit of extra effort to add those keywords into your writing.
4. Write LinkedIn posts optimized for SEO (and post them at the right time)
You’ve probably already done quite a bit of posting and re-sharing, but have you used LinkedIn’s article feature? These longform posts give you the ability to essentially host your own blog through your company’s LinkedIn page, meaning you can cover topics relevant to your industry with more depth than you might be able to in a post. And these articles help improve your SEO profile, too!
Say your company works in software integration. You could post articles about the tools that are desperately in need of integration, making sure to optimize them with relevant keywords. That makes these articles easier to find, and if you show off your expertise, your brand can become known as an authority on the topic.
You’ll also want to make sure you’re publishing your posts at the right time (a.k.a. when your audience is the most active on the platform) to benefit from early engagement.
Hootsuite’s Best Time to Publish feature (found under Analytics) tells you the best times to post on LinkedIn (as well as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok). The recommendations are based on your past performance and tailored to your unique audience and their activity patterns on social.
But, there’s no “best” time to publish for everything. The Best Time to Publish tool goes one step further than the rest and breaks down different suggested times for three key goals:
- Build awareness
- Increase engagement
- Drive traffic
This allows you to match each piece of content to a specific business goals and optimize your posting schedule for maximum effectiveness.
5. Keep your page complete and up-to-date
LinkedIn pages might be the most thorough of all social media platforms, with a ton of fields and opportunities to add detail that other platforms can’t compete with. But many LinkedIn companies only add a quick blurb in the about section and an image. That’s a huge missed opportunity!
Not only does the LinkedIn search engine like complete pages, but every section is a chance to add keywords that’ll help your page rank higher. Here are the fields you should absolutely complete in your page — and what you should put in them:
- Your tagline: Remember that your tagline should essentially be the elevator pitch for your page or profile. Keep it short, but make sure to use one or two keywords that describe what you do.
- About: You have a lot to work with here. You’ll want to do a bit of keyword research to determine exactly what you should be adding in here, but it’s a good idea to use this space as the LinkedIn SEO vehicle that it is. Describe what you do, how you do it, and what sets you apart from the competition.
- Website: Make sure you include your company’s website in this field. It sounds like a no-brainer but hey, it’s easy to forget a field or two.
- Industry: Don’t forget to call out your industry here. It’ll make it easier for job seekers to find your company’s page.
- Specialties: This is a veritable treasure trove of SEO potential! You can include a ton of keywords here that tie your company page directly into high-value keywords people search for.
- Location: LinkedIn will automatically give you the right options for this when you put in your postal code, but you need to give this some thought. For example, if your company is headquartered around Toronto, you can either pick the exact city (e.g. Burlington) or the area (e.g. Greater Toronto Area). Depending on where you work, one option might be a stronger SEO choice than the other.
- Products: No matter what kind of product or service you sell, the Products tab is a great space to work some SEO magic. By adding a product, you get a whole paragraph to describe what it does and how it works. Even better, LinkedIn users will be prompted to add your product as a skill on their own profile, which can give you a ton more reach.
With these techniques, your LinkedIn page will show up at the top of search results, and you’ll get so many messages from potential connections it’ll start being its own problem.
LinkedIn SEO FAQs
Still want to know more about LinkedIn SEO? We’ve got you covered.
Does SEO matter on LinkedIn?
Absolutely! SEO matters with all online content that’s served up by search engines, and that’s especially important on LinkedIn. By optimizing your LinkedIn profile for SEO, you can ensure that your company shows up first in related searches, making it easier for potential clients, KOLs, and job candidates to find you.
How do I optimize my LinkedIn Page for SEO?
There are more than a few things you can do to improve your SEO presence on LinkedIn:
- Make your headline into an elevator pitch.
- Customize your URL
- Optimize your About section
- Write LinkedIn posts optimized for SEO
- Complete your profile
- Keep your profile up to date
How can you find the right keywords for LinkedIn SEO?
First, have a look at some of your competitors. Are there words that come up again and again? That’s not a writer being lazy, it’s someone trying to get their LinkedIn page to rank for these keywords. Take note of common expressions and sentences, and turn them into keywords you can use on your page.
If you have a list of keywords and you’re looking to prioritize them, you can use Google Trends to get a rough idea of how much search traffic a specific keyword gets on Google. By testing out different keywords and phrases — and seeing how many searches they get — you’ll get a sense of which ones you should go for. For example, here’s the trend chart for “social media management.”
How often should I optimize my company’s LinkedIn page?
How often can you update it? You shouldn’t update it for an update’s sake, but if you think about it a bit, you can probably find opportunities to update your page. Hosting an event? LinkedIn has a tab you can use to announce it. Launching a new product? Make sure you add it to your page!
The key is to make sure your page has the most up-to-date information there is. That’ll help your page show up higher in LinkedIn search results.
Easily manage your LinkedIn Page alongside your other social channels using Hootsuite. From a single platform you can schedule and share content—including video—engage your network, and boost top-performing content.